Book review: The Glass Castle


Brody Daw

“The Glass Castle” by Jeannette Walls is arguably one of the best memoirs that has ever been published. Beginning at the impressionable age of three, Walls recounts her beautiful and heartbreaking story that follows her family of nomads and her eventual decision to join civilization, leaving her parents behind as she flourished. 

The central themes of community and family weave the pages together. Walls’ father, when sober, is charismatic and vibrant towards his children but when money runs low he turns to whiskey. Her mother, a free spirited artist, loves the world of paint more than the responsibility of children. Walls’ family has spent their lives running, often escaping in the middle of the night from dusty mining towns on the run from invisible FBI agents. 

There is only one unspoken rule, never acknowledge that the life that is filled with empty fridges and uncertainty is anything but a glorious adventure. As their life of broken promises begins to fracture, the Walls’ children develop the unwavering resilience and persistence that only comes alongside hardship. Walls has a story to tell, a story of childhood innocence, forgiveness and above all connection.